For its 40th year, Bologna′s annual ceramic-tile fair showcased an impressive array of product to its almost 100,000 international visitors. Among the highlights: surprising finishes and textures, advanced porcelain-slab technology—and color!
Italgraniti enhanced its 2021 Nuances concrete-inspired porcelain slabs with three soft hues: Giada (jade), Rose (pink), and Luce (a light yellow). All come in 47¼"x 110¼"x ¼" formats and also in three anti-slip sizes close to ⅜" thick, suitable for both indoor and outdoor floors. A ribbed wall slab—in the new colors, plus existing white, sage, and blue shades—completes the offering.
This Cercom series offers a number of porcelain variations on travertine (a top stone look this year) for floor and wall—from slabs as large 48"x 110" to mosaics—in three finishes and tones of ivory, cream, and gray. Among them, Lines (pictured), a 24"x 48" wall panel, is a refreshing twist on the real thing, with a linear tone-on-tone pattern and texture that can complement the rest of the collection or stand on its own.
The look of Ceppo di Gre, a northern Italian stone, is reproduced by ABK Group′s Materia brand for a range of applications including tables and induction cooking surfaces. One of a series of 64" x 127" sintered slabs at nearly ¼", ½", or ¾" thick, the stone-like material has realistic through-body veining and surface bas reliefs.
SEGNI su Pigmenti
Conceived by Milanese designer Ferruccio Laviani, this line of tactile porcelain wall slabs from Lea offers a range of 12 matte colors, from saturated to neutrals (the Pigmenti), overlaid with one of five glossy black patterns in relief, each based on a common sign, such as the "Segno =" (pictured), applied over an ochre "Sunset" panel. The collection comes in thin sizes near 20"x 40".
This wistful tribute to the craft and countryside of Italy was developed by Fioranese with the architecture studio 23Bassi. Available in three playful motifs —Firenze, Siena, and L′Aquila (the latter two shown)— these 8"x 8" matte tiles beg for infinite pattern combinations and pair beautifully with the line′s play on traditional solids: terra-cotta, sky blue, peach, ultramarine, and moss.
Established in 1741, Marca Corona is said to be the oldest ceramic works in Sassuolo, a town at the heart of Italy′s tile production. Iridea Degradé (pictured) demonstrates the company′s ability to evolve with the times. The ombré effect of this subtly iridescent 20"x 47" ridged wall panel has a luminous quality and comes in four pastel variations, Cannella, Oceano (pictured), Alga, and Alga Oceano. Iridea solids round out the collection.
Atlas Concorde partnered with Zaha Hadid Architects to develop the Diamond mosaic decor from its new Marvel Meraviglia porcelain slabs, a line inspired by Calacatta Meraviglia marble. Finishes include matte, polished, and a new Velvetech, which assimilates the silky sheen and feel of polished natural stone.
Nendo founder and designer Oki Sato is responsible for this collection of approximately 8"-square full-body tiles, etched with patterns inspired by the ripples and swirls that wind creates on the water, rice paddies, and grasslands of his native Japan. Elegant in its simplicity, Windy comprises four motifs in as many neutral shades.
Le Corbusier LCS Ceramics
With permission from Les Couleurs Suisse AG of Zurich, Gigacer devised a series of 12"x 48" full-body porcelain wall panels in 10 glossy colors, subdued and vibrant, from Le Corbusier′s Architectural Polychromy system. The line is an ideal pairing for the company′s concrete-like Béton Gris and Blanc floor and wall surfaces, also inspired by the work of the Swiss architect.